Damien Kaukonen

Damien Kaukonen

Postdoctoral Researcher
Visiting address: Nobels väg 12a, 17165 Solna
Postal address: C8 Medicinsk epidemiologi och biostatistik, C8 MEB Czene, 171 77 Stockholm

About me

  • A bioinformatician focusing on HER2+ breast cancer. My interests are patient
    outcomes, machine learning, and Multi -omic approaches (RNA, Exome, and
    epiegentics). Worked in CA, FI, IE, FR, and now SE.
    Originally started my science career in Canada in astrophysics, but changed
    to molecular biology halfway through my BSc when someone close to me was
    diagnosed with breast cancer. I completed my BSc thesis combining the
    mathematics and biology sides of my degree to model the treatment of ER+ cell
    lines with various different anti-estrogens.
    Carrying the momentum of cross-disciplinary work, I went to the University of
    Turku in Finland to do my MSc in Bioinformatics, with a focus in machine
    learning. My MSc project utilized machine learning to identify gene
    expression patterns from key pathways across several breast cancer cell lines
    that correlated with sensitivity to different chemotheraputics. I then went
    on to the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, where I did my PhD in
    translational bioinformatics. Here I developed workflows, analyzed data from
    clinical trials, and helped to develop and optimize our own laboratory method
    to better study co-locating epigenetic marks. All of my work here was done
    taking a multi-omic approach to understanding the phenomenon that drives
    HER2+ breast cancer. This included genomic, epigenomic, transcriptomic, and
    proteomic data, combined with clinical outcomes, to better understand HER2+
    breast cancer. During my PhD, I did a secondment at INSERM in Paris, working
    in a lab that focused on multi-omic research.
    2020-2021 was spent working as a postdoc in COVID-19 and neurological
    diseases at Åbo Akademi in Finland. Now I am at Karolinska, at the Medical
    Epidemiology and Biostatistics department working on HER2+ breast cancer.
    BSc- Molecular Biology (Molecular Genetics, Immunology, Oncology)
    MSc- Bioinformatics (Machine learning, transcriptomics, pharmacokinetics)
    PhD- Bioinformatics (Translational bioinformatics, workflow development,


  • Currently, my interests are focused around HER2+ breast cancer. While I am a
    bioinformatician at heart, I am currently integrating epidemiology into my
    skill set. My focus continues the investigation of HER2 and clinical
    outcomes, especially with regards to the Estrogen receptor and other
    diagnostic/prognostic factors. I am also interested in the family history of
    HER2+ breast cancer as not much is known about it.



  • Senior Bioinformatician, Bioinformatics, InFLAMES, 2023-
  • Postdoctoral Researcher, Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, 2024-2024
  • Postdoc, Bioinformatics, Åbo Akademi University, 2020-2021
  • Summer Researcher, Cancer Biology, CancerCare Manitoba, 2015-2015

Degrees and Education

  • PhD, Translational Bioinformatics, Interrogating HER2+ breast cancer using multi -omic approaches, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, 2020
  • MSc, Developmental Bioinformatics, Using Artificial Intelligence to characterize the relationship between chemotherapeutics and gene expression, University of Turku, 2016
  • BSc (Honours), Molecular Biology and Immunology, Modelling treatment response of ER+ Breast Cancer cells using delayed differential equations, University of Winnipeg, 2015

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